What is a "Potential Tropical Cyclone"

A new weather term entered the lexicon this week when the National Hurricane Center (NHC) issued its first-ever Potential Tropical Cyclone (PTC) advisory Sunday afternoon, highlighting the threat of a strong tropical wave in the central Atlantic that is likely to affect the Windward Islands as a tropical storm. Another system in the northwest Caribbean remains on track to move into the Gulf of Mexico, where it could affect areas from Texas to Florida as a tropical storm later this week.

The new Potential Tropical Cyclone advisories will provide more detailed guidance on systems that are not yet at depression strength but that have a chance of intensifying and bringing tropical storm or hurricane conditions to land areas within 48 hours. In their announcement of this and other service changes for 2017, NHC said: “Under previous longstanding NWS policy, it has not been permitted to issue a hurricane or tropical storm watch or warning until after a tropical cyclone had formed.  Advances…

Emergency Management Consulting Projects

In part two of our blog "What is an Emergency Management Consulting Firm?", we take a look at what a typical emergency management consulting project looks like.

Our typical emergency management consulting projects are designed to help local agencies or businesses prepare through a cycle of planning, training and exercises. We help our clients prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters.

We also evaluate how well response and recovery plans work through after action reviews and improvement plans to address areas needing improvement. After Action Reports (AARs) and improvement planning is typically done after a real life emergency or an exercise.
All Hands helps our clients develop and implement Comprehensive Emergency Management Programs and Plans through a series of steps including Emergency Management Program Review, Capability and Gap Assessments, and Strategic Planning. We then help close identified gaps often by developing or updating a Comprehensive Emergency Manag…

What is an Emergency Management Consulting Firm?

What is an Emergency Management Consulting Firm?
I am often asked what I do.  When I answer that I am an Emergency Management Consultant, I typically get an odd look (unless I am talking to an Emergency Manager).  
I typically explain that we help governments, businesses, communities, and people prepare for disasters.  But emergency management is complex and should involve the whole community. 

Today’s blog is an attempt to answer the question:
What is Emergency Management Consulting?
Emergency management consulting firms, and emergency management consultants, help clients with their emergency management programs.  Emergency management is defined by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as “The managerial function charged with creating the framework within which communities reduce vulnerability to threats/hazards and cope with disasters.”
We describe emergency management as a comprehensive program to prevent and mitigate hazards and to prepare for, respond to, and recover from inci…

Radical Islam: An Escalating Threat

This article by John Powers addresses the escalating threat posed by radical Islam and the safe havens that support the movement.
This was originally written as an Op-Ed. The opinions expressed are those of the author.
Excerpt: An Escalating Threat
"We have ignored warnings of serious threats before that resulted in extreme consequences. The 1930’s are a good example. In many respects the current threat of radical Islam is much more serious as it could easily become irreversible if we fail to act decisively.
"The reason for such a dire prospect is that the number of safe havens that serve as centers for recruitment appear to be multiplying exponentially. Forty years ago, radical Islam seemed fairly limited and the threat was mainly in the background until the bombings in 1983 (Beirut Embassy) and 1993 (World Trade Center). Today, the numbers of recruits flocking to ISIS is a bit frightening and is best viewed as an indicator of the rate of growth of this threat. For perspec…

FY2014 DHS Preparedness Grant Programs Allocation for #UASI

FY 2014 Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP)
According to the Grant Programs Directorate (GPD), a component of the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the HSGP is one tool among a comprehensive set of measures authorized by Congress and implemented by the Administration to help strengthen the Nation against risks associated with acts of terrorism and other catastrophic events. The FY 2014 HSGP plays an important role in the implementation of the National Preparedness System (NPS) by supporting the building, sustainment, and delivery of core capabilities essential to achieving the National Preparedness Goal of a secure and resilient Nation.
The FY 2014 HSGP supports core capabilities across the five mission areas of Prevention, Protection, Mitigation, Response, and Recovery based on allowable costs. HSGP is comprised of three interconnected grant programs:
State Homeland Security Program (SHSP)*. SHSP provides $401,346,000 to support th…

Free “How to Search” Training Guides are Now Available for SAR Personnel

I wanted to make everyone aware of a free resource (with no commercial agenda) that is now available to the Search and Rescue (SAR) community. This is a project that was developed by members of the SAR community who simply have the desire to make SAR personnel more effective searchers. The web site is supported through an endowment.
International Search and Rescue (ISAR) Alliance Training Library
The Frank Parker Training Library[1] is made up of a set of structured instructional modules designed to be used by Training Officers to help them to train personnel in “how to search”.
These modules have been crafted by Dave Perkins and Pete Roberts, the fathers’ of “critical separation” and other innovative search field skills.
All the documents in this training library are free.
Visit the ISAR Alliance web site at  and click on “Training Library”: The aim of these training modules are to achieve certain “how to search” proficiencies. 
These proficiencies include:
Understanding of …


I saw this on Google+ and wanted to share it. I do not know Frantz but I'm thankful for his sharing it.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone. - Steve

by Frantz Ostmann on Saturday, 
November 17, 2012 at 7:13am 

1. The excitement and coolness wears off around day 3

2. You are never really prepared to go weeks without power, heat, water etc. Never!

3. Yes it can happen to you.

4. Just because your generator runs like a top, does not mean its producing electricity.

5. If you do not have water stored up you are in trouble.
a. A couple of cases of bottled water is “NOT” water storage

6. Should have as much fuel as water
a. Propane
b. Gas
c. Kerosene
d. Firewood
e. Firestarter, (kindling, paper, etc)

7. Even the smallest little thing that you get from the store should be stocked up.. (spark plug for the generator, BBQ lighter, etc)

8. If you are not working, chances are nobody else is either.

9. I was surprised how quickly normal social behavior goes out the window. I am not talking about s…